How to Draw an Anime Boy (Shounen)

A lot of us grew up watching shounen anime. You know, those wild and sometimes violent shows with crazy fight scenes, unique stories, crazy competitive sports (e.g., model car racing, spinning tops) and a kid in a funny outfit and spiky hair. Admit it, we love them. The West grew up with '80s action-adventure cartoons, and the arrival of shounen anime offered a unique twist. The anime boys of the '90s appealed to a broad audience—from kids to young adults. They vary from nice guys with earth-shaking furies (Son Goku) to hotblooded competitors (Ash Ketchum), from hyperactive ninja (Naruto) to space cowboys (Spike). Even today, shounen anime never lose their spark, and they will continue to charm future anime geeks for years to come.

And yes, they are fun to draw.

Shoujo characters might be the first anime figures I learned to draw, but once I got the hang of it, I “upgraded” to doing shounens. They seem to reflect a hotblooded side of me, and I have fun sketching them with oversized weapons (sometimes posing near their mechas). With that said, let’s do shounen characters this time. I will draw my character based on my preferences (hence you might find their outfits to be more realistic and less colorful).

The sausages and eggs method.
The sausages and eggs method.

Yes, Sausages and Eggs Also Apply
We showed in our earlier article how Neil Buchanan’s sausages and eggs methods worked so well. It allows the figure to do intricate poses—though the anime girl we made only did simple reclining pose. As an added twist, we added the wire frame method, my own way of starting a sketch.

And now we will do the same to our shounen figure.

The great thing about anime boys are, male silhouettes are simpler than women. There are fewer curves, hence less chance of getting things off-proportioned. In short, male figures are easier to draw since they require fewer sausages and eggs.

As a Bonus, We Will Ink Our Drawing
All my anime art tutorials are done in simple pencil sketch.